IS THERE GOING TO BE A RESURRECTION?
Any question concerning God’s plans, must be answered by His word. The only thing we can learn is what has been revealed. Many read into the scriptures what they want to believe, rather than what God revealed.
Some believe that only the righteous will be resurrected, and that the wicked will simply remain dead. Our Lord revealed that this is not correct. “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation” (John 5:28-29). Notice, Jesus said, “all that are in the graves...shall come forth...” this is a resurrection of both the good and the evil. The apostle Paul wrote, “For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (I Corinthians 15:21). Note, Paul said, “...the resurrection of the dead...” which plainly reveals a resurrection of all the dead, at the end of time.
The apostle Paul writing to the Thessalonians seeking to comfort them stated, “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (I Thessalonians 4:16-17). Paul said, “... the dead in Christ shall rise first...” What does this mean? It cannot mean, first, before those out of Christ. This would contradict what Christ said in John 5:28-29. Paul is simply saying, that the dead in Christ will be resurrected from the grave before the living will be caught up together in the clouds.
Again Paul wrote on this subject. “So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body” (I Corinthians 15:42-44). He compares the burial and resurrection of the body to the sowing of seed verses 36-38. The word “it” in this passage means the human body that is buried and raised. Paul said, “In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (I Corinthians 15:52).
John said, “Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (I John 3:2). Again John stated, “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works” (Revelation 20:12-13). Where ever one may be buried, they will be resurrected.
Yes, the Bible clearly teaches a resurrection of the dead before the final judgment. The state one is in at death will be the same at the resurrection: saved or lost, there are no other options. --- Charles E. Burch